A pro photographer tests Apple's M1 MacBook

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Apr 21, 2006
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Thanks for posting. I don't plan on buying a new MBP till next year at the earliest, but if there is a 16 inch version and LR, PS, and C1 are all optimized by then it seems like a great step forward for Mac. My only concern is memory. I currently have 32 on my MBP and wonder if 16 will be enough. Perhaps there will be a 16 in MBP with a 32 option by the time I am set to buy.
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2005
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Moscow, Idaho
Thanks for posting. I don't plan on buying a new MBP till next year at the earliest, but if there is a 16 inch version and LR, PS, and C1 are all optimized by then it seems like a great step forward for Mac. My only concern is memory. I currently have 32 on my MBP and wonder if 16 will be enough. Perhaps there will be a 16 in MBP with a 32 option by the time I am set to buy.
I remember reading that the M1 manages memory differently and far more efficiently than Intel based chips, so traditional rules/expectations of memory needs don't apply anymore.
 
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Oct 25, 2007
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Potomac Falls, VA
My observations, although not as intensive, were similar. I did not compare to a Win PC just an i7 16 MBP from 2019. I have not been using Adobe betas yet just the Roesetta process. Super speedy import nd editing D850 files.
 
Joined
Apr 21, 2006
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I remember reading that the M1 manages memory differently and far more efficiently than Intel based chips, so traditional rules/expectations of memory needs don't apply anymore.
I hope that is true. That would be great. Luckily, I am not buying right now so there will be plenty of time to read what earlier adopters will say.
 
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
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London
The more you research the M1 technology the more you will find that even 8gb is enough for most users.
It is a game changer.
More cores are being rumoured for the M1X and M2, with a 32/64 core option for the Mac Pro coming this year of next.
Intel is trying to vapourware with its Evo technology but it is far from being ready.
 
I am no pro photographer and I don't use LR and PS, etc., to process my images, but I have been very pleased so far with my M1 MBP with 1 TB storage SSD and 16 GB RAM. I've processed a few images on that machine so far, but mostly to check out how smoothly the process works and I've been very pleasantly surprised and happy with the images I have processed so far (DXO PhotoLab 4, plus later on a little finishing up with Luminar A( to see how that would work out, too). Right now I'm hanging out at home most of the time but I am looking ahead to the future when I might travel once again and have the M1 MBP with me and want to process some images along the way.....
 
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Dec 3, 2012
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I did recently, and don't regret it one bit. My IMac was grindingly slow and would freeze when processing images. The Mac mini just hums along. In Lightroom classic; photoshop; DXO - no problems.
Curious what monitor you put on the mini? I've been looking at them, and it's confusing.
 
Joined
Jul 21, 2008
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Sevierville, TN
I recently got a MacBook Air M1 512 giggliebytes of storage and 8 megs of ram.

Too new for a review, but first impressions are:

It is quick and a nice machine to work with, except I hate trackpads.

So far favorite iMac programs work fine. Migration is always a hassle as I try to set up sharing, etc. iCloud just won't release some of my images, but probably my ignorance.

Affinity photo on the M1 is a speedy app, just would prefer if it was Capture NX2 (is there a NX2 Anonymous group anyone is aware of ;-)

Battery is at 59% and last charged it yesterday. At least four hours of use in that time possibly more. Have been downloading and trying out various apps. Battery monitors shows biggest hog is Safari (not Affinity?).

Worry about SSD storage which is not replaceable or upgradeable and does wear out (any machine). Should get my external Samsung SSD tomorrow from Amazon. Plan on using it for TimeMachine and a small folder of old pics.

So far no reason to regret 8 megs of ram, but I don't video edit (still think moving pictures are just a fad).
 
Joined
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The purpose was to replace and upgrade the my slower than heck iPad Air. Have a iMac which is hanging tough but getting long in the tooth. I might seriously consider a monitor a M1 Mac mini to replace the iMac not very far down the road. In that case I would just clone the machines to make migration easy.
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
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Potomac Falls, VA
The purpose was to replace and upgrade the my slower than heck iPad Air. Have a iMac which is hanging tough but getting long in the tooth. I might seriously consider a monitor a M1 Mac mini to replace the iMac not very far down the road. In that case I would just clone the machines to make migration easy.
Congrats. Consider a hub to connect multiple devices, like a storage drive, monitor and perhaps a card reader. Always a good idea too to use a mouse if you don’t like the track pad.

I have a BT keyboard, trackpad and mouse with my M1 as carryover from Macobook pros. Never had an issue as it all works seamlessly
 
I love my M1 MBP with 1 TB storage SSD and 16 RAM...... So far I have used this machine very rarely for processing/editing images but I knew that she is capable and up to the job when I DO decide to edit a few images when away from home..... In the meantime she certainly steps right up to the plate when it is to handle everyday needs such as email, internet browsing, etc. and I've been more than pleased. This is a fast, (literally) cool machine that gets the job done without fuss or muss!
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2010
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Pacific Wonderland
I read that the 8MB versions page so hard that the write rate will kill the SSD in an estimated 2 years.
This is why I always put in a SSD just for temp and the pagefile.
 
Joined
Jul 21, 2008
Messages
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Location
Sevierville, TN
Congrats. Consider a hub to connect multiple devices, like a storage drive, monitor and perhaps a card reader. Always a good idea too to use a mouse if you don’t like the track pad.

I have a BT keyboard, trackpad and mouse with my M1 as carryover from Macobook pros. Never had an issue as it all works seamlessly

Good comment. I was going to buy one of the hubs that uses both usb-c connections and plugs into the side of the laptop, that would be convenient for toting around. However, someone in a review said they won't work with the hardshell case I have from Apple. Think its made by "incase"?
 

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